Day 959: Really Scottish

Yesterday, my son Aaron, his aunt Deborah, and I went on a 12-hour  tour of the Scottish Highlands, which was

… really Scottish of us.

In reality,

  • I’m not Scottish at all,
  • Deborah and Aaron may have some Scottish blood, and
  • Aaron looks

… really Scottish, don’t you agree?

Even though I am 0% Scottish, I know more about being really Scottish today than I did yesterday. On the bus tour,  I learned the following:

  • Stirling, a town north of Edinburgh, means “endeavor” or “striving.”
  • The horse-head statues we saw on our first day in Edinburgh were inspired by two gigantic statues on the side of the road to the Highlands.


  • The Scottish  Highlands have their own strangely adorable cows.


  • The Scottish Highlands have their own strangely mysterious beauty.





  • Loch Ness is so deep and so large that the water there is more than the water held by all the other bodies of water in the United Kingdom, combined.
  • “Ben” means mountain and Ben Nevis (which means “mountain with head in the clouds”) is the tallest point in the United Kingdom.

  • Hot chocolate in the Highlands does NOT have the requisite white and pink marshmallows found in Edinburgh.

  •  No matter how much beauty is all around, certain 0% Scottish people like to take certain types of photos.




  • The word “Inver”  — as in “Inverness” —  means “mouth” (and certain people who look Scottish and are born of mothers who are 0% Scottish go all artistic when asked to take pictures in the Scottish Highlands).

Any really Scottish or any other questions?

I leaned more really Scottish facts yesterday, but I need to get ready to meet two people whom I believe are really Scottish and who both have the same extraordinarily unusual congenital heart condition as I do.

Before I end this post, here‘s some really Scottish music Deborah and I were singing along to yesterday on the tour bus.

Really Scottish thanks to my son Aaron, to my excellent ex-sister-in-law Deborah, to the bus driver Peter, to Alastair McDonald, to all the Lochs,  Bens, and other amazing things we saw yesterday, and to you — of course! — no matter how Scottish you are.

Categories: personal growth, photojournalism | Tags: , , , , , , | 48 Comments

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48 thoughts on “Day 959: Really Scottish

  1. Have you tried haggis and neeps yet?

  2. From your number one REALLY Scottish fan … yeah! So glad you got to see the Highlands and Urqhuart Castle. Its one of my favorite castles.
    Looks like a great day trip.
    And boy – you got practice photographing the really Scottish moving clouds! 😉

    • We were surprised that Urqhuart Castle was in its current hurt state, Really Scottish Val, but I guess those Jacobites sometimes blew things up before they left. So glad you could join me today!

  3. Loch Ness look monstrous, Ann! And if the Scottish Highlands cows have horns, wow, they aren’t horsing around!! Thank you for this tour, both beautiful and educational. I hope your meeting with the Scottish folk of special heart was equally beneficial to your peace of spirit and mind.

    • As usual, Mark, your comment is Really On the Mark-ish. My meeting this morning with those two folks who are a wee bit like me was wonderful. Now, I’m at the hotel room, hoping that stepping off the high Edinburgh curbs and landing wrong has resulted in only a wee bit of an ankle sprain. Lovely to just relax and see the scenery in here.

      • Oh, no, not a high or low ankle sprain! Ouch. Elevate it and let your special heart get some blood to that ache, Anne.

      • I did elevate it, Mark, but then because I’m really Ann-ish, I went out to see a really American version of “Rent.” It was really special.

  4. I love the fluffy red-headed cows, they look really Scottish. The Horse Head statues coming out of the ground are very interesting. It looks like you had a lovely day. I bet you guys were tired after that 12 hour tour.

    • Thank you for this lovely SD-ish comment. I remarked to my traveling companions yesterday how strange it was that sitting in a bus and then on a boat looking at beautiful scenery could be so tiring. Today, I’m getting a good rest.

      • I’m glad – I can’t wait to see what fun things you guys have planned for tomorrow!!!!!

  5. NotAPunkRocker

    I want a Duck & Dry! And I wonder how exactly they think the cow air freshener is supposed to smell?

    I really just want to go to Scotland, that’s all 😀

    • As usual, I had way too many photos to include in one post and I was seriously considering NOT including the Duck & Dry. Then, I thought — one of my readers is sure to love this. I’m so glad it was you! Come to Scotland, there are wonderful ducks and many other beautiful things.

  6. Be sure to have a Scotch egg–I travelled across Wales eating nothing but Scotch eggs, green apples, and Guinness for days. It was very sustaining. I’m half-Scottish, descended from the Murray clan. I told this to a Scottish man who replied, “I’m a Campbell! The Murrays and Campbells fought!” This isn’t surprising–the Campbells fought everyone, but the Murrays fought back harder than some others. I bought him a pint and he gave me a Scottish pound (no longer legal tender at the time) and we agreed to end centuries of enmity between our families.

    • What I heard on the trip yesterday from the bus driver was “Never trust a Campbell,” although a Campbell was sitting right in front of me and he seemed rather nice. I’m not surprised, Chris, that you’ve done your part to reduce enmity in the world. And, I will do my best to sample a Scotch egg before I leave.

      • In the restaurants you’ll likely find traditional Scotch eggs–a hard boiled egg wrapped in sausage and bread crumbs and deep-fried. In small roadside shops you’ll find the mass-produced version wrapped in cellophane. Shake it and you’ll hear the egg rolling inside its sausage container. It’s hearty junk food.

      • This is REALLY Scottish.


    Thank you for a wonderful tour of Scotland and especially the information on Aran knitting symbols. It was Scottishly interesting. Love, Karen

    • Thank you for being such a wonderful neighbor, Karen, even when we’re on opposite sides of The Pond. When somebody mentioned the Isle of Arran yesterday we thought it might be The Isle of Aaron. Because I’m not Really Scottish I do not know whether any relationship exists between the Isle of Arran and Aran wool. Love, Ann

  8. What a gorgeous country!
    A friend visited Scotland last year and happened to visit an island on the very day they were having a stone skipping contest. My friend WON the international stone skimming contest! They even mailed her the prize, all the way to Bisbee, Arizona, USA.

    • That is, really, one of the best Scottish stories I’ve heard, Emilie. I’m so glad you skipped this jewel of a comment all the way across the pond to reach me today.

  9. The actress Ella Logan was really Scottish, although she played Sharon McLonergan, an Irish girl in the Broadway version of Finian’s Rainbow.

  10. “Strangely Adorable Cows” would make an excellent title for your memoir, if you decide to write one. Or, of course, for this post.

    I am having so much fun travelling through Scotland with you and your excellente and son. I didn’t know that the Loch Ness was so deep and I wonder what makes it so? As far as hot chocolate goes, it’s good to know what to expect if I ever get to Scotland — but mead may be the more traditional drink. Bracing tea? Or whiskey? I am not sure. The weather there suits me perfectly, though. I love the castle by the sea.

    • Thank you for this strangely adorable comment, Maureen. Maybe we shall meet some day on the bonnie bonnie banks of Loch Lomond.

  11. Ann, I really enjoyed enjoyed your images so much, I feel like I’m there. I know you didn’t ask me to, but I fixed one that came out very dark of the castle with Photoshop, I hope you don’t mind:

  12. Last time I go to Loch Ness. The didn’t tell me about the monster!

  13. There is critical evidence that this creature existed; how can they send a kitty cat like me to work here?

  14. Ann, there’s critical evidence that there’s a creature in those waters.

  15. I don’t know much about the Scots, other than I love them! I love how they sound. I love their land. I love their humor. That’s about all I know. And it’s enough.

  16. What I know about Scotland and the Scottish you could write on a postage stamp…………………..just saying

    • That’s okay with me, Joanne, but would you be interested in knowing that “Franked” mail means stamped mail here?

  17. Pingback: Day 960: Follow the Heart | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

  18. Scotland is very beautiful Ann, I’m happy that you enjoy your trip 😀

  19. Well, I am really Scottish and you have made me very homesick with all these recent Scotland posts! Hope you’re having a wonderful time!

    • Lauren, I’m waking up my luck today and noticing some comments that I missed months ago. Thanks so much for being really Scottish and visiting here!

  20. Pingback: Day 1050: So So | The Year(s) of Living Non-Judgmentally

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